Put on your party hats—we're celebrating a couple of birthdays. First of all, HeartWood turned two years old on February 10. Can you believe it?
And yesterday, I turned . . . somewhat older than two.
As my birthday approached, I reflected on previous birthdays and the many days between all those birthdays. That train of thought gave me an idea for this post: write about one important lesson learned from each decade of my life.
Easy enough. Or so I thought until I sat down and tried to choose one bit of knowledge or wisdom from each decade. Not so easy. For instance, how do you select just one essential thing that you learned between the ages of 10 and 20? There were so many—from the practical (driving) to the spiritual (oh, those many, many Bible verses in Baptist Sunday school), with all sorts of others in between, some learned in classrooms, others by experience.
So while it may not be possible to pick the essential lesson from each decade, I've tried to select one enduring lesson from each of those time spans.
Here's what I came up with:
By age 30, I had my life more or less mapped out. Then one day I looked at that map and went: Wait a minute—I'm going where?? I don't think so! The problem was, going a different way meant leaving a long-term relationship, stepping off a professional track, moving to a part of the country where I never imagined myself living—in short, heading a completely different direction with no guarantee it was the right one.
Yet some internal stirring urged me to go for it. I did, and I've never regretted it. That bold move led to a rewarding career in journalism, a new trove of treasured friendships and world-expanding experiences, and eventually, the satisfying life I'm living today.
Lesson: There's life after loss
Lesson: Stay flexible
Lesson: It's never too late
from the heart of the woods
Nan Sanders Pokerwinski, a former journalist, writes memoir and personal essays, makes collages and likes to play outside. She lives in West Michigan with her husband, Ray.
Last Wednesday Wisdom